Americans need to continue to social distance this Halloween

Halloween+decorations+line+a+family%27s+mantle.

Photos by Abby Pikett

Halloween decorations line a family’s mantle.

Abby Pikett, Editor-in-Chief

Due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, which

began in March of this year, people all across the country have had to postpone or cancel events they were looking forward to such as birthday parties, weddings, vacations and holiday gatherings. As unfortunate as these circumstances are, people should not forget that the United States is in the midst of a pandemic, therefore; all citizens should do their part in reducing the spread of the disease by limiting their social interactions and following public health guidelines. With Halloween looming near, many Americans need reminding of that. 

As of Oct. 16, North Carolina has been averaging around 2,000 new cases of the coronavirus daily, with a total of 242,789 cases and 3,910 deaths. These numbers should scare anyone looking forward to trick or treating Oct. 31 into staying home and staying safe. In Wake County alone, there have been a total of 19,583 cases with an average of 100 new cases a day. 

What many Americans seem to have forgotten since the pandemic began is that the only way to reduce and eventually eliminate all cases of the virus is to social distance, stay home if they can, wear a mask and stay at least six feet away from anyone else if they go out anywhere, inside or outside. 

Every year, Halloween comes with an opportunity to throw a party, have friends over to watch scary movies or go trick or treating. In other words, Halloween is a chance to socialize for Americans of all ages, which is exactly why this year it poses such a threat to the control of the coronavirus. 

While many people would like to pretend that the coronavirus no longer poses a threat to them, it needs to be understood and heard that the country is still suffering from a deadly outbreak, and treating the situation with negligence is exactly why the United States can not keep the virus under control. For over eight months the country has been trying to deal with the pandemic, and when millions of Americans ignore those efforts by deciding to disregard the precautions advocated, it continually puts the health of every American at risk.

Of course there are still ways to celebrate while practicing measures to keep oneself and their family safe. People who look forward to putting their creative talents to use can still do so by making and wearing their own homemade costumes. Making a costume by recycling clothes one already has in their home is a great way to be creative and still have a costume to wear on Halloween, even if it is only worn at home or on a walk around the neighborhood, as long as knocking on doors and saying “trick or treat” is not involved. 

Carving pumpkins is also a great way to get creative and be festive. Pumpkins can be easily bought at most grocery stores and they can be carved at home. To make the activity more fun, one could host a virtual pumpkin carving contest with friends or family. 

For anyone looking for an activity that requires less involvement, a scary movie marathon is an exciting way to celebrate Halloween without even having to lift a finger, except to press a button on the TV remote. 

Every child looks forward to trick or treating each year, and thankfully there are still ways to enjoy the holiday tradition without coming face-to-face with numerous neighbors. Families can have at-home trick or treating by decorating each room of the house and passing out a different type of candy at each doorway. Playing Halloween music during this can add to the spooky atmosphere. Families can also make a candy graveyard by decorating the yard and hiding candy in various spots or inside Halloween-themed eggs. This is similar to an Easter egg hunt, but it is a safe way for kids to have fun and still go searching for candy.

Of course this Halloween is going to be different from previous years, and while many people are looking for ways to celebrate and have fun, it is still very important to keep in mind the reasons why these alternatives are needed. The coronavirus pandemic is still raging strong. As a community and as a country, America needs to wake up from their coffin this Halloween and put the country back on track by following the precautions made by various health officials, keeping their distance and wearing a mask, preferably a Halloween-themed one.